For many, there is no point arguing the case for deathcore in 2014. The quintessence of the genre has been all but lost, save for the efforts of acts like Thy Art Is Murder, Fit For An Autopsy etc. With We Are Violent People By Nature, their fifth full length, I Declare War have set about bringing the genre back to it’s glory days, circa 2007-2008. While they are still found guilty of falling into genre cliches and pitfalls, they have put together ten tracks of simple yet effective aggression that go a long way in proving the genre still has a pulse.
Nothing will surprise long time followers here and in the same breath nothing will turn haters into fans. I Declare War play to their strengths in writing breakdown heavy death metal and with several tricks of the trade make tracks like ‘Quiet’ and ‘Black Heart’ worth a repeat listen. Layered vocals make beat down sections punch above their weight and forays into dissonance and harmony, hidden underneath the meat of the riffing, help satiate a morbid curiosity as to whether or not the rest of the album will offer anything new. The breakdown count on this record is certainly not as high as previous endeavors and this can only be regarded as a plus. The sumo slow mid section of ‘Noose’ takes its sweet time before finally devolving into a slow motion stampede that succumbs to its own violence.
Where We Are Violent People By Nature stutters is the regurgitation of riffs and ideas. By the time ‘Shadow Man’ and ‘The Bad Man’ come around the band have played all of their cards, leaving a little variety for the titular closing track. The identikit percussion and factory issue guitar tone do nothing but increase the monotony of the albums latter stages. Far from being a one trick pony, I Declare War have still taken the easy road with half of this album. While none of the 31 minutes of run time are dull, a lot of them are fairly uninspired. Without the second guitar tinkering away underneath the chug a lug rhythms, songs like ‘Blurred Vision’ would simply end up a mess of low register riffs and hate soaked lyrics.
Even with their reliance on genre tropes , I Declare War have not dropped the ball or whatever other cliche fits. We Are Violent People By Nature is aggressive, persistently heavy and has it’s moments thanks to an astute use of breakdowns and it’s relatively short run time. Deathcore, as it was once known, is definitely still a thing. For how long? No one knows but this album is a thing right now and is worth some of your hard earned time. For fans of I Declare War.
I Declare War’s We Are Violent People By Nature gets…